The Ultimate Monotasking Guide for Busy People

Here’s the thing. Monotaskers get shit done.

“Multitasking contributes to the release of stress hormones and adrenaline, which can cause long-term health problems if not controlled, and contributes to the loss of short-term memory” – In her article, The Myth of Multitasking, Christine Rosen was referring to a study by psychologist David Meyer on the effects of multi-tasking on the human brain.


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If scientific talk sends you to sleep, let me break it down for you: multitasking stresses us out. Most of us are guilty of it, even when we are trying to relax: tv on in the background, scrolling through our phone while we cook dinner… If we aren’t on at least 2 devices at once, we feel something is missing. I know people whose hands immediately fly to their phone whenever it beeps, even if they are mid-sentence. Even if they are sitting down to dinner. Even if they are entertaining people, mid-sentence, while sitting down to dinner!


Science has spoken, people. And it is backing up the monotasking movement. I, for one, feel hugely relieved. I’ve never been into multitasking. As women we are expected to be good at it. Who knows where that idea came from – perhaps as mothers and homemakers, women were always expected to do several things at once, or they would never get done. It became ingrained in our collective psyche, as if our very womanhood depended on the ability to cook dinner, change a nappy and soothe a crying child all at once… Maybe my feminist imagination is running away with me here.


What I’m trying to say is, the age of multitasking is dead. May it rest in peace forever and never be resurrected to stress us out again. Long live the monotask!


It is easy to slip into multitasking when you have your own business, or run a blog. There is always so much to be done, so many ideas floating around, that you often want to tackle everything at once! The allure of “getting more done” can be so shiny that you frantically open 17 tabs, have 3 documents open at the same time, surround yourself with bits of paper, to-do lists and half-finished cups of coffee, trying to hold it all in your headspace at once. It’s a recipe for disaster.


More and more, people are turning to monotasking, because IT WORKS.


How can it be that seemingly by doing less, you can achieve more? Like this: busy-ness is not the same as business.


You can make yourself busy as a bee, fussing around with several things at once, feeling important. After 2 hours, you will look back and wonder what actually happened in that time. Did you achieve anything tangible? Cross anything off your to-do list? Chances are your brain has been incredibly distracted. Each new email, new piece of paper, instagram alert or tab open in your browser is adding another load of information on top of your frazzled attantion span. It is impossible to pay close attention to several things at once, and foolish to try.


Monotasking funnels all that lost and distracted energy into a laser beam of productivity, directing it at one task at a time. The upshot? You get shit done.


Without further ado! I present to you my Ultimate Monotasking Guide for Busy People. May you prosper and become unstoppable, climb the ranks of the secret monotasking society and slowly gain world domination. All I ask is that you widely share your secret to success (this guide!) with friends and family, spreading battle cries of productivity in your wake.


This guide is a step-by-step process – making monotasking even easier. These 10 steps are crucial for creating a supportive environment for monotasking. Everyone leads a hectic life, sometimes relishing the speed and distraction of multitasking. Monotasking is here to give you more bang for your buck – productivity without the high stress levels. Get ready to revolutionise your life with this Ultimate Guide to Monotasking (for busy people)!



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1 thought on “The Ultimate Monotasking Guide for Busy People

  1. Hi Alanna,
    Thank you for this post. I took the challenge and wanted to monotask on reading this. And then Kitty came and demanded attention so I took an unplanned 10 min break. Then Micha wanted something and there was another break. Not so easy, the outside world needs to know, that you are on monotasking, too.
    I wonder how people without To do lists or any other list keep sane. Crossing things of is so rewarding and being sure you can come back to a thought later is so freeing.
    Do you organize your brain dump somehow? What happens to it after you are done?
    How do you organize the topics you want to talk about so you can allow yourself to really focus in on one? Do you have a routine or tools you use and can recommend?
    I like that you suggested timing yourself. Everything takes as long as much time you give it. Have you heard of the pomodoro technique?
    I also like that you mention that monotasking also applies to mealtime. The silent retreat really shows the difference when you not even talk while eating.

    Did you get my email? I found a few pictures from your teacher training you might like to have. Just write me back and I’ll send them to you.

    Love and Sunshine from Ohui 🙂

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